Why you are Really Creating for Two during the Holiday Season

This guest post was written by Allisa Jacobs.

The holiday season is an exciting time for online creative businesses. The virtual hustle and bustle breathes vitality into your shop and the rush of orders keeps you on our toes. In the frenzy of gift wrapping and last minute shopping, it can be easy to overlook an awesome opportunity though. For online shops, the holidays mean youre creating for two.

Youre creating for buyers but also their mums, daughters, friends, co-workers, relatives, and secret-santa partners – the recipients of their gifts. These are people who may not have otherwise had the opportunity to get to know your products or who are new to the handmade scene in general. So look at this period of gift-giving jubilee as a golden moment to welcome new folks to your brand.

Here are three tips on how to make the most of this wonderful opportunity and earn loyalty from both gift giver and receiver:

1. Make it giftyWhile its certainly beneficial to offer super-lovely packaging year round, going the extra mile to prepare your orders for gift-giving can really set your item and shop apart from the rest. Buyers really do appreciate the tissue paper, gift cards, boxes, ribbon and such to make their order ready to share.
Plus, not only are you taking the burden off your customer, youre also ensuring your item will look its best when presented to someone else!

2. Make it theirs: It can be challenging to offer during the holidays, but any sort of personalization makes for an ultra-thoughtful gift. Whether its a gift card with the package sent directly to the recipient or adding that extra customized touch to your product is a sure fire way to make your shop remarkable to them both.

On a personal note, during my first year selling on Etsy, a husband contacted me asking for a custom pouch with fabric and details he thought his wife would enjoy. It was created and shipped with much anticipation and covertness.  She was absolutely overjoyed, both with the thoughtfulness of her husband and with my handiwork. Three years later, she is one of my most loyal and supportive customers.

3. Make it easy:  Imagine someone gleefully opening up their gorgeously packaged gift sent to them by Aunt Bea in Kansas to find your amazing item tucked inside! Smitten and intrigued, they want to know more. They just HAVE to see more from this brand. In fact, they want to tell their whole world about this lovely handmade gift made by”¦made by”¦uh”¦who made this?  Theres a tag without a website and of course Aunt Bea lost the business card. Googling produces 11,234 hits for something else. How will they ever find you?

Make it easy for your gift recipient. Perhaps attach a hang tag, include business cards for buyer and recipient, purchase those labels youve been putting off, and ensure your brand name is Googleable.

There you have it. Three tips to make your shop really stand out this holiday season. Not just for your current customers, but for your future ones as well.

Have your own tips to share for the holidays?

Leave your response in the comments below.

image credit mini animal snowflakes

About the author: Allisa is the dreamer and designer behind the Allisa Jacobs line of handbags and accessories. She love the process of making from sketch to finish. She also enjoys sharing her entrepreneurial insights and wrote an e-book, Rise & Shine, to help others develop their creative small businesses.

 

6 comments | Click here to reply

These are such great tips! My friend and I just got our Etsy shop up and running and few months ago, so this is our first holiday season as sellers. We’ll definitely be putting these to good use! Xo, Katie

katie [the bright life]

Truly great advice that I certainly will follow, especially with tags, but I have something to add to the list!

While someone may or may not be purchasing a gift, they may be purchasing something for themselves. Christmas is the time for giving, and while we are all trying to make some money, adding a little extra for Christmas will get you remembered. I bought a waterfall cardigan around January, and I got a free broach and a lollipop with it (I was admittedly most excited by the lollipop). I still remember the name of the seller.

If they’re buying a gift, it’s nice to include something for them, too. Be it something simple like a complimentary pencil or a badge, or something more that you also made. There’s a wonderful Etsy seller who includes a free felted acorn with every order. It says more about you as a person and that you really do care for your customers.

I already have my freebies lined up for Christmas, and I’ve made them season appropriate – with the colder weather comes flu season, so I add in little freebies to help ward it off, as well as other little bits and pieces! It might only be small details, but it can make opening packages much more exciting, especially if the item is meant for someone else.

Kim Wedlock

Great tips! Some are so easy to forget but so so important! I always include business cards in my orders, and I always keep a notebook with the business cards of sellers I’ve previously shopped with as reference. I’ve gone back through my book and purchased from sellers again just because there shop was so memorable and I needed a gift for someone! (Or myself). <3

Shannon Marie

Thank you so much for having me here. I enjoy all the feedback & comments…more good tips! Happy to contribute 🙂

Allisa

Your three tips seem so obvious when you say them, but goodness if I don’t know plenty of Etsy sellers who don’t do them. I think they’re good ideas to keep year-round. Who wouldn’t want their new purchase to arrive in pretty gift wrap, even if it’s just for them? Who wouldn’t want their purchase to be as personal and special as possible, whether it’s a gift or not? And do you know anyone who doesn’t lose contact info?? I would think it crucial to always make it easy to find your brand. Thanks for these wonderful tips!!

Laura

I sure do love talking to other creatives about packaging. And yes it is amazing how many folks on Etsy don’t create awesome packaging. I just embarked on the mission to come up with a unique, easy and creative way to package my items. And my people have loved it. So, thank you for helping other peeps out Ms. Allisa! Rock on creative love!

http://www.junebugandco.etsy.com

Miranda- June Bug & Co
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